Sunday, September 21, 2014

Sometimes life is not what you expected...

Have you ever had that person that your spouse talked about that you were jealous of.  Yeah, my husband had that girl.  She was a friend that he had known since high school.  She was family of one of his customers that he called on regularly.  When he came home talking about her, it was nails on a chalk board every time he mentioned her name because he always knew so much about her and talked about her in such a high regard.  To put it lightly, I despised her.

Well one day, he announced to me that she had just had a baby and he volunteered me to take her newborn pictures.  WHAT???!!!  NO WAY.  oh...Yes.  He.  Did.  

I was sick to my stomach.  Why would he do such a thing?  Now she was on her way to my house and I was a nervous wreck.  I was so irritated.  But I pulled it together as she knocked on my door.  I opened the door there she stood with her precious little baby boy and her darling husband.  She was way cuter than I imagined.  My heart sunk.  

They came in and we conducted newborn pictures.  We chatted and got to know each other, and I was so annoyed at how much I really, really liked them.  She was cute AND nice.  How could that be?? 

Well, fast forward a year and several photo shoots later…. Shonda was pregnant again.  

We celebrated Jet's 1st Birthday.

We took maternity pictures.  

Next thing I knew I was at the hospital to take their baby girl's hospital pictures, sharing in a special moment with this couple who I now adored beyond words and was fortunate enough to call friends.   

This is the reason I do what I do as a photographer.  I was able to document a moment of their lives that I knew they would cherish for ever, but little did I know the extent of how valued that moment was going to be.  

Less than three months after the birth of their baby girl, on Saturday, August 23, 2014, Mike Fiore, was in a horrific boating accident.  He was transferred to a  local hospital in Missouri near where the accident happened.   He was expected to make a full recovery.  However, three days later, on August 26, 2014, Mike Fiore, a father, husband, son, a boat builder extraordinaire, and a friend to many, passed away of a pulmonary embolism.   

I write this in tears.  Pissed off.  Mad.  That I am yet again having to experience a family being devastated by death.  Yet, I know that God has a bigger plan.  Not sure what that plan is yet. But it is the only thing I can do to fathom this wretched situation.  

Yesterday we celebrated Mike's life.  I knew him as a father and a husband.  And yesterday, I learned of the mark he left in the power boat industry.  He was an icon.  

He will be missed.

Sometimes life is not what you expect.

I sure never expected to be barbecuing with this little family who knocked on my door one day for newborn pictures.

I gained a friend. 

And more, I never expected to help plan this husband's funeral.

She lost a husband.  

Take time to enjoy today. Embrace it.  Enjoy it.  Make the most of it.

Sometimes life takes a turn you won't expect….

Friday, September 19, 2014


This morning, Brady asked me about the picture of the bear from Bass Lake.  The only place I knew were to find it was on my blog.  So, I found my blog and scrolled and scrolled through, found the bear and kept scrolling and scrolled some more.  I skimmed through all my old blog posts.  Most of which were when my boys were so little and so young.  I really enjoyed taking that trip down memory lane.  I wish I took the time to blog like I used to.   To document all those precious moments both good and bad is something I will cherish forever!

So, here I am, sitting at my computer… Taking a brief minute (or 10) to document some feelings that I can later look back on and enjoy.  I don't care if no one ever reads my blog, but someday I will and I'll be glad I took the time.

So with that being said, today I want to take the time to recognize what is going on in my life now.  I had an amazing coffee date yesterday morning with one of my most favorite people, Linda Stephens.  I always take so much away from our dates and feel so content with life.  Life is good.

One of the things we talked about is how
I am so blessed to be part of such an amazing community here in Harlan Ranch. We moved into our new neighborhood almost two years ago.  I could not have asked for a better circle of friends who I consider family.

Here is a few of my favorites who I was lucky to celebrate the big 37 with!

Oh and there is this…. #HHF  High Heel Friday.  We make it mandatory… EVERY FRIDAY… at school drop off.   And we rock it!

And then there's this guy… Who I am happy to have just celebrated 11 years with and am still as in love with as ever! 

And our little family.  I could't be happier.  (except maybe if the two orange and black supporters were in blue instead). Actually, I wouldn't change that either. It makes for a super fun household!  

And well, now I am off to actually get some work done.  That photography business is rocking more than ever.  Edit. Edit. Edit.  And if you wondering why it it taking me so long to edit your pictures, it's because I am taking more time to blog!  YES!    

Later Peeps!  

Rock those high heels today!!!  


Thursday, July 17, 2014

Carson and Brady's Lego Challenge

I am home with two boys that are Lego fanatics!  A friend told me about a Lego Challenge that she saw on Pinterest.  It sounded interesting so I researched it and discovered the a website that had weekly lego challenges to get kids excited about their lego building.  I decided to adopt some of those challenges and invite you in the fun.  What do you think?

I'm going to try and not get to technical here, but here is what I am thinking….

Build the following challenges and post pictures of them on Instagram (with the #carsonandbradyslegochallenge) for all our kids to see and share with one another.

Build the challenges at your own pace.  One a day, or all today!!  

Ready, set, BUILD!

1.  Build a Lego Car.  Any car, truck or vehicle... anything with wheels.   

2.  Build an electronic device.  Any phone, camera, TV, iPad or computer, etc.

3.  Build an animal.  

4.  Build something you'd find in the sky.

5.  Build something with only BLUE legos.

6.  Build a Birthday Cake.  Or cookies or a cupcake, or something sweet!

7.  Build your favorite character.  Minecraft, Pokemon, My Little Pony… you get the idea.

8.  Build a home. A house or building of sort.  

9.  Build a Lego Hat.  Can you make one that you can actually wear?

10.  Build your favorite food.  Sandwich, hamburger, taco, fruit salad??  

Use your imagination.  Be creative.  Have fun!  

Let's get everyone involved and share!!  

I am excited to see all your kids and parent creations!!  (you better believe that I am going to build too!!)  

Be sure to share your pictures on instagram and hashtag #carsonandbradyslegochallenge and #legochallengenumber)(1-10)